Bond finds a place in Kiwi squad for Zimbabwe tour

Published: Wednesday, June 22, 2005, 23:53 [IST]
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Wellington:Injury-prone Kiwi quickie Shane Bond is all set to return to international cricket following his inclusion in the national squad for the tour of Zimbabwe starting in August.

Wellington off-spinner Jeetan Patel is the only new face in the squads announced for both Tests ans ODIs on Wednesday.

Patel had been picked for his ability to bowl under the bat and late in the innings, New Zealand coach John Bracewell said.

Bond will provide a welcome boost to the Black Caps's attack after making a successful recovery from surgery to fix a persistent back problem which has been haunting him since the past one year.

"It is exciting to see Shane Bond back after a successful return to first class cricket," Bracewell said in a statement.

"We will monitor his progress in Australia with the Emerging Players team and expect that should he continue to progress well, we will see him return to international cricket at some stage during the Zimbabwe tour."

The squads are almost full-strength with no players unavailable because of moral concerns about Zimbabwe's human rights situation.

Fast bowler Daryl Tuffey and all-rounder Chris Harris have not been considered as they are recovering from injury.

It is worth recalling that in April, captain Stephen Fleming said he would consider boycotting the tour if he thought it would "make a difference".

The New Zealand team has been under pressure to cancel the tour in protest of Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe's regime with Prime Minister Helen Clarke leading a chorus of disapproval.

Facing a possible $2 million fine from the International Cricket Council (ICC) if they refuse to tour, New Zealand Cricket (NZC) have said the trip would go ahead but no action would be taken against individual players who refused to go.


Test squad: Stephen Fleming (captain) Daniel Vettori, Nathan Astle, Shane Bond, Craig Cumming, James Franklin, Hamish Marshall, James Marshall, Chris Martin, Brendon McCullum, Kyle Mills, Jacob Oram, Scott Styris, Lou Vincent, Paul Wiseman.

One-day squad: Stephen Fleming (captain), Daniel Vettori, Andre Adams, Nathan Astle, Shane Bond, Chris Cairns, Hamish Marshall, Brendon McCullum, Craig McMillan, Jacob Oram, Kyle Mills, Jeetan Patel, Scott Styris, Lou Vincent.

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